Founded in 1832 by Auguste Agassiz, the company that would become Longines really came into its own in 1860 when Agassiz’s nephew, Ernest Francillon, took the watch maker’s reigns. Under Francillon, the company moved to a site called Les Longines on the river Suze in 1867, trademarked the name Longines in 1880, and registered the famous winged-hourglass logo in 1889.

Of course, Francillon did more than see to the company’s marketing needs. He also oversaw technological innovations that would make Longines one of the world’s most respected watch makers. One of his first decisions was to introduce anchor escapements into Longines timepieces. Then, in 1888, he presided over Longines’s first certified chronometer.

By 1909, Longines had enough experience with small-caliber movements that it could devote more of its attention to the jewelry watches and wristwatches that would make it famous. Two years later, it introduced a barrel-shaped wristwatch that is considered the precursor of the Longines Evidenza line, which flourished in the 1920s.

As it turns out, the winged-hourglass was a prescient symbol for a company that created numerous timepieces for pilots. In 1919, Longines became the official supplier to the International Aeronautical Federation; in 1925, a Longines accompanied aviator Antonio Locatelli on a flight to the North Pole region; and in 1926, Walter Mittelholzer wore a Longines when he flew from Switzerland to Iran.

But the association really took off, if you will, in 1927, when Charles Lindbergh made his solo flight across the Atlantic. A Longines measurement device at Roosevelt Field in Long Island marked the moment he took off; a similar Longines timepiece at Le Bourget Airfield in Paris where he landed recorded the time of the flight: 33 hours, 30 minutes, 29.8 seconds.

While in the air, Lindbergh had a lot of time to think about a lot of things, including the perfect watch, which he eventually designed for Longines. His Longines Lindbergh Hour Angle, introduced in 1932, used high-frequency quartz regulators to aid in the navigation of transatlantic flights by showing both Greenwich Mean Time and the corresponding hour angle. Needless to say, a Lindbergh Hour Angle from the 1930s is one of the most collectible antique Longines wristwatches available today.

The introduction of a wrist chronograph in 1936 allowed the aviation connection to continue in 1938, when Howard Hughes broke the speed record for a flight around the world. By t...

Calendars, water-resistance, and self-winding mechanisms were added as features to Longines watches during the 1940s. Gold and diamonds became more common as post-war prosperity allowed Longines to go after the luxury market.

And then, in 1954, Longines introduced one of its most enduring sports-lifestyle brands, the Conquest. The handsome Flagship followed in 1957. A vintage Conquest or Flagship from the 1950s is as prized by collectors today as it was by customers in the mid-20th century. Another collectible wristwatch to look from the late 1950s is the Jamboree.

About our sources | Got something to add?

▼ Expand to read the full article ▼

Best of the Web (“Hall of Fame”)

National Watch and Clock Museum

National Watch and Clock Museum

This virtual museum, created by the National Association of Watch and Clock Collectors, lets you stroll through tim… [read review or visit site]

Clubs & Associations

Discussion Forums

Other Great Reference Sites

Most watched eBay auctions    

V.rare Solid 18k Gold Oversize Longines Chronograph Fly-back Cal.13zn WatchVintage Mens Longines Admiral Conquest Automatic Date A/f.............ref.8936Longines Weems Military Navigation Wrist Watch Ca. 1941- No ReserveVintage 14k Yellow Gold Longines Mystery Dial 21.6 Grams 31.5 Mm Runs Great Stunning Men's Longines 1956 Vintage 10k G/f Scalloped Lugs Immaculate Dial 27m1952 Vintage Longines Auto Men's St/st Full Size Flared Lugs Ivory Dial Serviced1943 Vintage Longines Calatrava Watch Cal. 12.68z S. Steel 35mm.Longines Gents Master Collection Chronograph Auto L2.629.4 2015 Mint Rrp £2500Vintage Longines Wittnauer Chronograph Watch 228t All-proofVintage Longines Automatic 1200 Mens Watch, Working, Keeping Near Perfect Time.Longines Master Collection L2.693.4 Chronograph Mens Watch Vintage Longines Grand Prize Automatic Man's Watch1925 Superb Silver Longines 15 Jewel Trench Style Watch On StrapVery Rare Longines Www Greenlander Dirty Dozen W/ Extract From The Archives Rare Longines 12.68 Zs 1950 Vintage S/s Mechanical Men´s Wristwatch High GradeLongines Vintage 12l 17j Military Style Mens Pilots Watch.longines 1971 9ct Yellow Gold Manual Wind Wrist Watch.Mens Vtg 14k Solid White Gold Longines 19j Wind-up Round Case Dress Watch-1960'sLongines 1950s AutomaticLongines " Golden Wing " Chronograph 18k Gold/st.steel Roman Dial W/braceletSuperb C1968 Longines Admiral Automatic 10k Gf Hexagon Shaped Mens Watch WorkingSolid 14k Gold Longines Vintage Wrist WatchLongines Bulova Hamilton Benrus Waltham Wrist Watch Lot Of 14 WatchesLongines Vintage Manual Wind Men's Watch St.steel Silver Dial Cal.6902 17jAuthentic Longines Evidenza Ref L2.701.4 Automatic Chronograph Day/date Xl Vintage Longines Diamond Dial Rectangle Classic Watch 14k White Gold No ReserveVintage 10k Gf Men's Longines Winding Watch Super Thin.Longines Masters CollectionLongines Hydroconquest Automatic Chrono L3.673.4.76.6Rare Early Longines Lindbergh Hour Angle Blue Enamel Mens Vintage Wrist WatchLongines Flagship Men's Wristwatch Roman Numbers Mvmnt WorkingFancy Floral Skeleton! Mens Vintage Watch From Longines Co. - Switzerland, 1918Longines Flagship Vhp Perpetual Calendar Watch, Needs Repair And Setting UpVintage Longines Wristwatch Asymmetric Mens Space Age Rare, Mid Century1960s Longines Flagship Automatic Date Stainless Steel 18k Gold Crest Logo WatchAuthentic Longines Flagship Date Black Dial Gold Plated Quartz Mens Wrist WatchMens Midsize Longines " Conquest "18k Cap Gold /ss Quartz W/braceletLongines Admiral Rare Calibre 501 Mens Swiss Stainless St Vintage 1970 Watch Ca1Mens Longines 18kgp/ St.steel White Roman Dial Quartz Round1913 Super Rare Tiffany & Co / Longines Sterling Silver Watch. 15j Cal. 10.85nVintage Longines Diamond Dial 17j L349.2 Cal. 2660 10k Gf Mens Watch, Working.Vintage Longines Ultronic Watch With Original Longines Wristband 4-parts/repairGentlemens Solid 9ct Gold Longines Cushion Watch 1945 - WorkingVintage Men's 14k Gold Longines Admiral 5 Star Automatic Wrist WatchVint Longines Miitarystyle Air Force Argentina Cal30 L Jumbo Noreserve Price@Vintage Longines Record Automatic Men's Watch Cal: 1955-2Vintage Longines "admiral Automatic" Cal.633.1 , 25 Jewels1959's Longines Kamasutra Theme 18k Solid Rose Gold Manual Wind Mens Watch $1 NrVintage Longines 14k Solid Gold Mens Wrist Watch - Mint Dial – Fancy Case LugsAntique Man Wristwatch - Longines1940's Longines 9lt 17j 10k Yellow Gold Filled Men's Watch RunningC. 1942 Vintage Longines 10l Hand Wind 10k Gold Filled Men's Dress WatchLongines Mens Watch Date Automatic MidsizeAuth Longines Hand Wind & Quartz Watch Movement 5items Set Swiss Made VintageVintage Longines 410 Manual Winding Watch Stainless Steel [828]Authentic Longines Lungomare Ref L3.633.4 Chronograph Gents WristwatchAuthentic Longines Presence Date Blue Dial Gold Plated Quartz Mens Wrist WatchVintage S/steel Longines Wristwatch - Manual - Working (u23)Rare Longines Ultra-chron Date 10kgf Automatic Men's WatchVintage Longines Mens Watch